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National Leadership, Surbaugh Leave of Absense

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Front the Commissioners Facebook page:

Dear Scout Executives, 
 
Over the past year, leadership of the national organization has been working tirelessly 
to empower our volunteers and staff to focus on delivering the mission of Scouting to 
more than two million young people, while also addressing our organization’s financial 
challenges. The work that each of us puts into this movement is vital, but to do our best 
on behalf of the Boy Scouts of America, we each must also look out for our own 
personal health. 
 
Today, I am reaching out to let you know that Chief Scout Executive Michael Surbaugh 
is taking a medical leave of absence to focus on challenges that require his total 
attention. Although I know your support is immensely appreciated, I ask that you respect 
his privacy and remain focused on our mission of delivering a great Scouting program to 
youth and families in our communities. We wish him a full recovery. 
 
Given that this comes at an important time for our organization, National Chair-Elect 
Dan Ownby and I will be personally supporting the national professional leadership 
team. Within the next several weeks, the National Executive Committee will identify an 
interim leader for the national organization. 
 
Whether you come to the movement as an employee, a volunteer, a parent or a Scout, 
you quickly realize that we are all one Scouting family. As we look back on a year of 
exceptional milestones, from welcoming both boys and girls into Scouts BSA, to the 
once-in-a-lifetime experience of the World Scout Jamboree, this is a time for all of us to 
support each other, the organization and the movement. Scouting plays a vital role in 
our communities and in the lives of so many young people. 
 
Thank you for your support and all you do for Scouting. 
 
Yours in Scouting, 
Jim Turley 
 
----- 
James S. Turley 
National Chair | Boy Scouts of America

 

Edited by RememberSchiff
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Sad News. The last few years definitely took it's toll on Mike. 

Edited by RememberSchiff
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Saw this yesterday on several of the Commissioner FB pages I am a member of; I can only hope that whatever the issue is, it has a favorable conclusion. 

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Nov 4: "Within the next several weeks, the National Executive Committee will identify an interim leader for the national organization. "

Scoutingnewsroom , National Leadership: https://www.scoutingnewsroom.org/about-the-bsa/national-leadership/   lists four Assistant CSE's as follows: 

John Mosby — Development.

Al Lambert – National Director of Outdoor Adventures,

Patrick Sterrett – National Director of Field Service

Mark Logemann – National Director of Support Services

Seemingly the above are the leading candidates for "interim CSE" , but another person may be selected. 

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I'd love to see them bring in someone from the outside for this.  The organization is at a critical juncture.  Rather than tapping someone in the system, it would be better to have the absolute best person in the role.

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3 hours ago, RememberSchiff said:

Elon Musk?  Steve Ballmer?  Kevin Plank?

 

2 hours ago, dkurtenbach said:

 

Robert Gates?

Sadly they (BSA National) does not seem to look for outside talent.  You have to be part of the club, raised in the club, dedicated to the club, in order to be anointed to run the club.  Likely some of the issues with finance and direction, currently impacting the organization, may have been lessened if leaders with some outside experience and different professional path had been in charge.

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1 hour ago, Jameson76 said:

Sadly they (BSA National) does not seem to look for outside talent.

And hence, too much kool-aid drinking. I hope it's someone that can sell a lot of popcorn.

1 hour ago, Jameson76 said:

Likely some of the issues with finance and direction, currently impacting the organization, may have been lessened if leaders with some outside experience and different professional path had been in charge.

I'm hoping Chapter 11 will force that change. Time to drain the kool-aid, so to speak.

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2 hours ago, Jameson76 said:

 

Sadly they (BSA National) does not seem to look for outside talent.  You have to be part of the club, raised in the club, dedicated to the club, in order to be anointed to run the club.  Likely some of the issues with finance and direction, currently impacting the organization, may have been lessened if leaders with some outside experience and different professional path had been in charge.

Hopefully Jim Turley will realize the fallacy of continuing to look internally..  He's got a pretty signficant resume and hopefully will look at this with that lens.  He mush have hired enough executives in his career to know how.

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In a military matter there is time when the battle is joined.  That precise time when strategy is executed and resources committed to effect a desired outcome.  Confidentiality is required so as to not tip off the adversary.  We are soon reaching that point and a change in our lead general will probably not significantly impact what is about to occur.  The Chapter 11 will roll-out, the PR and legal battle will be joined and the realignment of our financial assets and organizational structures will follow.  We will be temporarily leaner prior to the full build-out of our female membership.  Surbaugh made great decisions and provided great leadership while he was in-place.  He is to be thanked and congratulated.  I am not worried about who will sit in the lead general chair on D-Day will be because the battle plan is already drawn and the resources are just about lined-up and in-place.  This is going to be a successful endeavor in the near-term and over the coming years.       

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This is kind of the problem. D-Day thinking. "General" driven, top down leadership. Confidentiality rather than transparency. Battle plans. The world has changed. This kind of thinking is outdated. BSA needs to recalibrate to be relevant. We are more "at war" with ourselves than anyone else. National, councils, and units are all on different pages, and nothing has demonstrated that more than the recent fee increase debacle. While I think there are definitely some girls out there that we haven't reached yet who will enjoy scouting, why in the world would we think tens of thousands of them will suddenly abandon their sports and marching bands and other activities to join scouts any more than the boys would? If we are relying on them to save our future, it's not realistic. It's very convenient to blame other youth programs for BSA's ills and to think we need to "do battle", but the problems we have have been self inflicted.  BSA needs to retool to serve the needs of the local unit and help get kids outdoors and in the community.

 

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1 hour ago, yknot said:

BSA needs to retool to serve the needs of the local unit and help get kids outdoors and in the community.

Absolutely.  All Scouting is local.  Recruiting happens through units.  Program happens through units.  Retention happens through units.  We don't need a vast, multi-layered bureaucracy above the unit level, with the Scouting bureaucrats principally occupied in pleasing the Scouting bureaucrats in the layers above them.  We don't need them sucking money and time and labor out of the real Scout workers in the units.  Take a good look at what districts and councils and BSA National does.  How much value does it add to unit programs?

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